Ideas and views from across the left
Sally Hunt, 11 Dec 2013
The effects of the marketisation of higher education are pervasive. Our world-leading system is steadily being turned into a “sausage factory” of graduates.
Steve Hart, 10 Dec 2013
Obama's speech received very little coverage in the British press. But we should take note of his push for radical, bold economic and social policies.
Ann Pettifor, Stefan Stern, Richard Murphy, Professor Costas Lapavitsas, Duncan Weldon, Stephanie Blankenburg, 6 Dec 2013
Six leading thinkers give their reaction to the Chancellor's Autumn Statement, delivered on 5 December 2013
Ellie O’Hagan, 5 Dec 2013
Read all the latest analysis on the Autumn Statement here
Steve Hart, 4 Dec 2013
The Chancellor should use early signs growth to address the living standards crisis and reinvest in the economy. But he is more likely to deliver some eye-catching and divisive crumbs aimed at pleasing swing voters. Labour's response should be bold.
Sally Kosky, 29 Nov 2013
Young people are being asked to work for free, often for many months, based on the vague hope that it will result in a paid job. In some sectors, such as media, arts, politics, and charities, these roles have now replaced many if not most of the entry level jobs in those sectors. Unite the Union has been working with InternAware to put an end to this damaging practice.
Steve Murphy, 22 Nov 2013
Hastily stapling blacklisting to the end of a review of industrial relations is an insult to the victims of the scandal. There must be a full independent inquiry to ensure justice is done.
Lisa Nandy MP, 20 Nov 2013
Lisa Nandy MP's speech to Class's first national conference, Class Conference: Leading the Debate on 2nd November 2013, at Congress House, London.
David Lane, 19 Nov 2013
In the context of the current austerity policies and growing unemployment, now may be the time for a revival of market socialist ideas. By accepting markets but advocating public ownership as well as forms of employees’ control, market socialism may provide a first step in reviving socialist ideas and providing an alternative way of thinking to neo-liberalism.
Len McCluskey, 18 Nov 2013
Unite the Union's General Secretary Len McCluskey's keynote speech on "The Political Economy of Today" to Class's first national conference, Class Conference: Leading the Debate on 2nd November 2013, at Congress House, London.
Billy Hayes, 14 Nov 2013
CWU General Secretary Billy Hayes's speech to Class's first national conference, Class Conference: Leading the Debate on 2nd November 2013, at Congress House, London.
Frances O’Grady, 12 Nov 2013
The opening keynote speech given by TUC General Secretary, Frances O'Grady, at Class's first national conference on 2 November, 2013 at Congress House. Please check against delivery.
Steve Hart, 6 Nov 2013
500 trade unionists activists, Labour activists, politicians, campaigners and academics from all over the country came to TUC Congress House yesterday for the first National Conference of the Centre for Labour and Social Studies. Such conferences can be depressing. Sectarian arguments, oppositional politics, and a lack of inspiration can sap the will to live. Yesterday was different.
Mark Serwotka, 5 Nov 2013
If we have learned anything in recent weeks, it’s that when Labour responds to the campaigns we run and the arguments we make – reflecting people’s real concerns – then it is popular. Making bold policy announcements in the public interest means you make the political weather.
Katy Clark MP, 31 Oct 2013
We have a long way to go to challenge the consensus that austerity politics is the only solution to the current crisis. But there is an alternative. We need to tell the truth of the current crisis and propose alternatives in clear and unambiguous terms. We need to explain that most are not benefiting from any sort of recovery.
Len McCluskey, 25 Oct 2013
Millions of people in this country are working day and night to provide for their families. The very least those people can expect is to be able to pay their rent, heat their homes and travel to work without being destitute. The very least they can expect from a government they elected is intervention when private companies make destitution inevitable. At CLASS’s conference I will be making the argument that Labour should not be afraid to step in when the living standards of ordinary people are being trampled on – not just in terms of energy, but for a whole raft of basic necessities. If we want to improve living standards, we know we can’t rely on the free market to do it. So it’s up to the government. As David Cameron might say; there is no alternative.
Professor Marjorie Mayo, 3 Oct 2013
As the government imposes punitive restrictions on welfare, it is simultaneously removing the ability of people to challenge those restrictions through cuts and restrictions on legal aid. Faced with massive criticisms from broad-based campaign groups, the government has since backed down on some aspects but access to justice remains fundamentally threatened. The right to justice for all must be defended - we must support the protest that UK Uncut are mobilising on 5th October.
Steve Hart, 2 Oct 2013
Austerity was the solution to the massive problems left by the neo-liberal experiment. It was clear that austerity wasn’t going to work and Britain’s trade unions quickly identified that the Coalition Government’s austerity policies would be disastrous. Our campaigns were often lonely as the media regularly spoke of cuts as if they were unavoidable. But today, with worrying economic statistics constantly making the news there is wide recognition that austerity has failed.
Martin Smith, 26 Sep 2013
Our campaign for more rights for working people since 1997 has produced some real improvements in the lives of working people but has had little impact on our ability as trade unions to re-build our collective power to enforce them where it matters – in the workplace. This can only be done from the bottom up.
Kevin Hickson, Roy Hattersley, 20 Sep 2013
Now we are approaching the Labour Party Conference it is time to stress again the appeal of traditional democratic socialist aspirations and the relevance of policy. The Labour Party cannot win the next General Election by endlessly seeking to compromise with what it perceives as middle England. Between 1997 and 2010 the Party lost 5 million votes. While some of these went to other parties, a significant proportion simply decided to drop out of the democratic process. They felt that the Labour Party no longer spoke to their concerns. It is to these people that Labour must now appeal. It must stress the differences that exist between it and the Coalition Government. It must offer not just competence but also vision. Not just better management of the status quo but hope of a more just alternative.